Leg 7 Part Dos, Panama to New York

Tuesday 31st May – Bye Bye bitey insects

Eventually underway after motoring a couple of nights to find some wind. Le Mans start once more and again we smashed it. Now Just to sit back and watch our typical pattern of slipping back in the early stages of the race.

Covered in insect bites from Panama. Luckily mine don’t itch as much as others.

Have 2 wet pairs of pants and 2 wet shorts already.

Wednesday 1st June – Return of the flying fish

Don’t think the Caribbean sun reads that I am wearing Factor 50. Smothered in aloe Vera again.

The past day has been mostly spent sitting on the rail. Starting to get the bruises to prove it.

After yesterday’s dolphin show the sea has been nothing but a soup of seaweed (which all floats along in lines in the same direction) and flying fish which I have been returning back to the sea after their night time suicide attempts.

Thursday 2nd June – Invisible islands

Passing by more islands we will not see, such as Jamaica. Ahead of us currently is Guantanamo Bay, but you wouldn’t know it. We have to stay a minimum distance away from Cuba and Haiti.

Wind has dropped a bit but we’re still pushing hard to try and get ahead of LMAX sExchange and the Garmidiots.

I am sunburnt and have a big juicy pus-filled blister that I have been instructed not to squeeze by our medics.

Friday 3rd June – A sailor went to see sea sea

The spinnaker has been up and we inch our way through the Carribean, not seeing anything but sea as usual.

My bottom is so sore and my arms are bruised and my legs are burnt. Now for the delights of sweating in my bunk for 6 hours.

LMAX did a bit of cheating last night by violating the 12 mile boundary around Haiti. We protested. We’ll see what comes of it.

Saturday 4th June – Being creepy

We just passed an island. An actual island with rocks and a lighthouse and a beach. Not a mirage and not the sea!

We made a bad call yesterday and ended up 70 miles behind the lead 3 boats. But atm we are 4th with LMAX and GB behind. LMAX have put in a protest against us and GB to be spiteful.

Got attacked by midges and beetles last night.

Discussed creepy ways to wake someone up for watch. Top suggestions:

  1. Shout in their face
  2. Stroke their face
  3. Brush their hair
  4. Paint their nails
  5. Put their hand in warm water

Just imagine.

 Sunday 5th June – The Mills and Boon sequel

Sweaty hot horrible day on deck with no ssails Apparently we’ll be expecting some windy stuff soon (40 kt) so reef 3 was rethreaded.

Chris’s torch as romantic fiction author has finally been picked up. Our new storyteller is, on the surface, less racy and more gentile but I feel the subject matter pushes the boundaries further with our first same sex romance under the stars (the stars were incredible last night!)

I felt angry last night. Improved once I’d had a Snickers and a cup of tea. I need to stop being angry at people in my head. Only hurts me.

Monday 6th June – Waiting for Colin

Right now I am meltingly hot and we are awaiting the arrival of Colin, the tropical storm. Yep, that’s right, Colin.

There has actually been talk of pre-preparing food and locating the storm sails. Now even us worlders are worried! Anyway, more losing ground in light winds to do first.

Wednesday 8th June – Colin cometh

Talk and action of the past day mainly revolved around TS Colin (Farrell). When he finally did arrive we found ourselves pinned to our side in a broach that was probably about 10 minutes long whilst we got a headsail down. Definitely warranted some dramatic music. I was mother in the galley where, despite best efforts to be tidy, both me and the cooker got covered in peaches and evaporated milk and lemon squash. My tools also took the opportunity to fly round the boat including a Stanley knife, blade out (no knife champions here!) Finally things settled, although we continued to be tossed about and splashed on. All in all quite scary and I remembered why I don’t particularly like the sea at times.

We also tore the code 2 spinnaker, didn’t win the ocean sprint, look likely to slip back a few places and snapped the throttle off so I will be controlling the engine with my magic finger, Albany style. Not long until New York now.

Thurs 9th June – The fight for 5th

Almost there.Battling with LMAX for 5th place. Not our finest hour really, but hey, it could be worse. I have a tummy ache, hoping some Peanut Butter Cups will help.

I have decided that I am clearly an anomaly in this race because no one else seems to get worried or scared when conditions are rough. Not sure if this is because I am a huge coward or because they haven’t always thought about what could go wrong. I think Paul hopes I will come home and be brave, but I fear I will not!



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